Matthew Miller’s A/W’12 collection Inspired by Walks Around London

by Katie on March 20, 2012

Okay, I have to hold my hands up to a conflict of interest here. I first spotted Royal College of Art alumni Matthew Miller’s prodigious talent in September 2010, and that was before I discovered that he was working with one of my oldest mates, and Tinie Tempah’s stylist, Andrew Davis.
Some less fashion savvy friends commented favourably on Miller’s Spring/Summer 2011 collection after I had written about it for Katie, which is always a good sign. It doesn’t matter how fashion forward or how bleeding edge a menswear designer is, if the work’s not accessible to the man on the street then a label is consigned to, at best, cult status. Miller’s designs feel to me like a skillful synthesis of clubwear, sportswear, and tailoring. Simultaneously youthful, yet grown-up. These are a lot of plates to keep in the air, luckily Miller seems suitably grounded enough to take the overwhelming interest in his label in his stride. This interest lead to an over-subscribed, standing room only, your-name’s-not-down-you’re-not-coming-in lock down of a salon show during London Fashion Week but, like I said, I have friends in high places.
Inspired by the designer’s walks around London, and photographs taken along the way, Miller’s Autumn/Winter 2012 collection is a masculine selection of garments best described as uniforms for modern municipal explorers, the photographs digitally engineered into 21st century urban camouflage. Miller has taken these snapshots of inner-city surfaces and, through applying them to his precise tailoring, forces us to confront the beauty of the surroundings which we fail to notice every day.
As well as the QR (Quick Response) codes attached to each garment, which allow the wearer to access the location where Miller’s photographs were taken, compasses feature throughout, as well as functional details such as drawstrings, heavy zips and utility pockets. Coordinating rucksacks, and printed footwear courtesy of Oliver Sweeney, round off the collection.
Billed as “interactive fashion for the digital age”, it’s the strength of the boxy, butch cutting which lifts this collection above and beyond its seemingly gimmicky and geeky premise, slim suiting and sheeny technical outerwear which adheres to the right side of conceptual. Even a graffiti-printed suit-and-shirt combo manages to remain both elegant and extremely enticing – and that, ladies and gentlemen, is quite a talent.

Review written by Lee Clatworthy (@TeamChutzpah) for Katie Chutzpah blog.
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